We have breaking news to announce, Leafs' fans.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have officially signed 22-year-old forward Mason Marchment to a two-year, entry level contract. The team has confirmed the news on its PR Twitter account:
The Uxbridge, Ontario native has been playing with the Toronto Marlies, the Leafs' American Hockey League affiliate, since the 2015-16 season. He's also played with the Orlando Solar Bears, in the East Coast Hockey League. As The Athletic's James Mirtle said today, Marchment has worked extremely hard over the past few years:
"A project that has come a long way."
Marchment, a 6 foot 4, 200 pound left winger, amassed nine goals and 12 assists for 21 points in 37 games this season. The organization obviously believes he could become an NHL player, someday. Otherwise it wouldn't bother signing the guy to an ELC deal.
In case you missed it, Toronto Maple Leafs superstar Auston Matthews was no longer wearing the non-contact red sweater in today's morning skate, just hours before the game against the Montreal Canadiens. There were many people hoping he would be ready for the game, since he's been practising with the team for a few days already. Head coach Mike Babcock, however, did not think it would be wise to insert him in the line-up just yet.
He gave an important update about Matthews and other injured players. Here is what TSN's Kristen Shilton reported:
"Mike Babcock updates on #Leafs: Nikita Zaitsev and Frederik Andersen skated today, won’t play. Leo Komarov is day to day, won’t play. Auston Matthews getting close, won’t play."
We have to admit this team looks awesome ahead of another matchup against the Habs, even though some of our key players are injured:
Hyman - Nylander - Johnsson
Marleau - Kadri - Marner
JvR - Bozak - Brown
Moore - Plekanec - Kapanen
Rielly - Hainsey
Gardiner - Polak
Dermott - Carrick
The fact that Matthews is getting closer and closer to a return is great news for Toronto, but as Nick Kypreos said after Matthews suffered his shoulder injury, the Leafs simply have no reason to rush him:
“It’s been described to me as a second-degree shoulder separation,” Kypreos said. “Typically, that is two-to-four weeks. In the Leafs’ case, they don’t want to rush it back. They’ve built up this war chest of points in the standings. The most important thing to the Leaf management team is that he comes back healthy and pain free.”
The 20-year-old appeared in 53 games this season, in which he recorded 28 goals and 20 assists for 50 points.
Photo Credit: Zuma Press